Sharply criticising project delays of the past that lead to huge cost overruns, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said a new work culture of conceiving and completing projects before time is needed to boost economic growth.
Rejecting opposition Congress’ charge that projects he has been inaugurating in recent months were all started during their time, he said as Prime Minister he would have been happy if the projects were completed 15 years back and led to creation of jobs.
Dedicating to the nation Indian Oil Corp’s Rs 34,555-crore refinery here, Modi said the government is targeting reduction in oil import dependence by 10 per cent by 2022 by creating policy environment that supports raising domestic output as well as by mixing bio-fuels like ethanol in auto fuels.
“It is very natural that I am happy to inaugurate projects. But as Prime Minister of a country, I don’t feel happy at all. I would have been happy if these works would have been completed 15 years back, when lakhs of people here would have got jobs,” he said.
He added that projects in the country face obstructions in the form of court proceedings, tender process and sometimes agitations, making them very costly.
“For the development of the country, we all – citizens, bureaucracy, industry and policy makers, have to give birth to such a culture where projects start on time, progress within the scheduled time, and finish within the pre-decided time so that country gets the benefit, the benefit comes before scheduled time,” he said.
The government, he added, was “trying to bring in this change so that there is no serious loss to the exchequer because of delay.”
Initiatives have to be futuristic and completed before the designated time period.
“Delays shouldn’t occur,” he said, adding that in the past, ideas originated 50 years back, would take 10 years to put them on paper and conceived, a similar number of years to lay foundation stone and many more years before it is completed.